Round 1: The Data Center Switching Challenge

Industry leaders face off and present their fabric solutions

The dynamic nature of server virtualization requires a flexible data center network and a better management solution. The growth and importance of east-west traffic – application-to-application and application-to-storage - demands a super-fast and reliable data center network. The answer is new fabric architecture supplied by the leading data center switching vendors. The question is which Data Center switching vendor's solution and equipment should you select to build the new data center fabric? What makes one solution better? Which one is right for you? The 2012 Data Center Switching Challenge document captures the essence of what three leading vendors' have to offer. It provides a handy guide in which Avaya, Brocade and Hewlett-Packard each explain specifically where they excel.

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Network World Data Center Switching Challenge Series presented by Robin Layland

Round 2: Discussions

Getting Server Virtualization Right

Supporting server virtualization is the most important task network managers face today. Robin Layland leads a discussion with Paul Unbehagen from Avaya and John Gray from Hewlett-Packard on what needs to be done to support server virtualization. The discussion centers on what is required from switching vendors and covers key areas such as how best to handle the dynamic nature of VMs; must-have standards; what comes after spanning tree; how the concept of multi-tenancy fits into the enterprise data center network and the role SDN plays.

What it takes to build a Fast, Flexible and Manageable Data Center Network

Sanjib HomChaudhri from Brocade and Philippe Michelet from Hewlett-Packard join Robin in a panel discussion about what essential features every data center networking solution requires. We review how an efficient network design that can linearly scale with high availability can address the problems network managers face today. Then we explore how to achieve an efficient design by examining topics such as the move from a 3-tier to 2-tier architecture; layer 1, 2 and 3 multipathing; fast reconvergence; and how to manage VMs.

Podcast Transcripts

Delivering game-changing productivity, agility, and dependability

By creating one contiguous, end-to-end Fabric, Avaya is empowering businesses to achieve unprecedented levels of infrastructure productivity, service agility, and network dependability, the very essence of the fast, flexible, and secure design aspirations.

Our industry is currently experiencing a shift in application architecture away from simple Client/Server to complex, composite application designs, including the adoption of business operations intelligence applications that are based on communications-enabled business processes and complex-event processing. And, of course, at the heart of the next-generation data center is the pervasive adaption of Virtual Machine (VM) computing; the ability to support mobility is crucial to making this environment successful. Inefficient mobility equates to reduced flexibility, degraded time-to-service, and loss of productivity.

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HP FlexFabric Reference Architecture Overview: Building modern, virtualization-optimized data center networks

HP offers a flexible, virtualization-optimized data center network architecture that requires far fewer devices, interconnections, layers, and discrete appliances. HP Networking solutions streamline network operations and accelerate application and service delivery; reduce space, power, cooling, and capital requirements; and protect investments while providing a solid foundation for the future. This white paper reviews data center trends and describes HP solutions for building cost-effective, advanced data center networks that meet the evolving performance, reliability, and agility demands of the 21st century.

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Scaling Out Data Centers with Brocade VCS Fabric Technology and Brocade VDX Switches

Organizations of all sizes are facing daunting challenges as they struggle to adapt their data center networks to new technologies and applications. The move toward cloud architectures in particular is demanding a high-performance network interconnect that can host servers potentially numbering in the thousands. Beyond mere consolidation, large-scale server virtualization is generating unpredictable bandwidth requirements, driven by VM mobility. In addition, modern virtualized, composite/multitiered applications are generating massive levels of east/west inter-server traffic that must be handled effectively.

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